What’s new at the cherry farm market | News

Travel Town – John Smith remembers attending the National Cherry Blossom Festival while growing up in Saginaw.

“We’ve always been here for the Cherry Fest…this was the place to be every summer,” Smith said.

He now lives in Greenville, South Carolina, where he moved in 1996, and the businessman is still dating. But it is not a vacation. It’s to give people a “back off”.

He and his wife TJ own Halo Dips, a popular vendor at Cherry Farm Market, which is located next to the souvenir tent and food court at Open Space Park.

They offer about 20 different “all-natural” blends, which sell for $6 each, three for $15, five for $20 or eight for $30.

He said they always offer “cherry festival only” flavors. This year it’s Cherry BBQ, Cherry Sriracha, Cherry Bacon, and Cherry Cheesecake. New cheesecake this year.

His favorite is the one who has the kick: “Cherry Sriracha in his place!”

All of his blends are available online, he said, but that these special flavors are “for festival only.”

Halo Dips is one of the newest features at Cherry Farm Market, which also serves Grand Traverse Sauce, The Licorice Guy, Harborview Lavender Farms, Six Ligs, Erg Bars, Cherry Stop, Ferry Farms, Out of the Woods and Sleeping Bear Farms, Inc. Cherry Connection and Full Service Snack Co.

They were here last year, but weren’t able to offer a free tasting due to restrictions.

Smith, who turned 45, said this year he’s back to normal.

On a Sunday afternoon, he was busy doing the dip and distributing pretzels to potential buyers for the dip in open containers. It makes a difference when people can taste the products on site.

He learned this 15 years ago when he was selling T-shirts for a living.

He would put a few of his homemade dips at the end of the table “just to see” the customers’ reaction. People loved them once they sampled.

It made economic sense to change direction.

“The sales margin for the dips was better than the T-shirt sales margins, and we said, ‘We should just do this! “We love it. It’s fun.”

Today he travels the country on a few of these shows, but he always comes back to his home state at this time of year because South Carolina is “tough in the summer.”

“That’s why we came here!” He said. “It’s very hot.”

The most popular flavors at the festival are Cherry BBQ and garlic & chive. Its most popular flavors online are bacon, pineapple (not available at the festival), garlic, and chives.

Other flavors you’ll find at the festival include sweet onion, key lime pie, beer and bacon, cheese tacos, Maryland Bay, creamy avocado, spinach, garden dill, spicy queso, bayou brew, Cajun, and spicy habanero.

All of its blends are natural.

No salt. No sugar. No MSG said.

Delicious mixtures require the addition of a glass of mayonnaise and a glass of sour cream. Sweet asks her for a cup of Greek yogurt.

Learn more about Halo Dips at halodips.com.

Patty Lyon, who oversees the Cherry Farm Market for the National Cherry Festival, said the market was very crowded in the first few days of the festival, despite some hiccups with the POS system. She added that customers were patient.

Besides Halo Dips selling well, she said Licorice Guy and Grand Traverse Sauce Company are also doing well.

Leon, who has volunteered at the festival for 38 years, said the market gives visitors a chance to experience “local flavours.” She usually runs a cherry pit spitting contest, one of the main events that has not returned due to the pandemic.

“This relates to the products that we sell in the region in general,” she said of the market. “Six Lugs is a great company. The TC Sauce guys are great. The Licorice Guy is new, but I love his product. I already got it. Forest Farm is doing a great job. All of these sellers do a good job and most of them are local.”

The Cherry Farm Market is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily through the National Cherry Blossom Festival, which runs through July 9.

Learn more about this year’s festival at cherryfestival.org.

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